A series of eight webinars exploring the global opportunities, barriers and success stories surrounding legume production will kick off in April and UK growers are invited to attend for free.
The LegValue and TRUE project is delivering the high-level programme of events hosted by experts from across Europe who aim to unlock the potential for greater production across the globe.
UK farmers and industry stakeholders are being urged to participate by the Processors and Growers Research Organisation, which is a partner member of the LegValue and TRUE project.
The PGRO’s Chief Executive, Roger Vickers, said: “Pulses have an incredibly bright future, both for farmers who want to grow a sustainable, diverse rotation, and for consumers seeking a versatile, protein-rich food with multiple health benefits.
“I believe that pulses can fit hand-in-glove with the UK’s new Environmental Land Management schemes, so now is an opportune time to re-double our efforts in sharing information and understanding which is what this project is all about.”
The online events mark the end of two collaborative EU Horizon-2020 funded projects which aimed to empower legume-supported food and feed production in across Europe. The creation of a new Legume Innovation Network will build on the projects’ legacies.
The events will include more details on the formation of the Network – a stakeholders’ forum designed to promote awareness of new insights, services or requirements for commercially competitive production and consumption of legume crops in Europe.
It will link industry with researchers, policy makers, civic organisations, brokers/traders and consultants throughout Europe and wider afield.
Roger Vickers: “The world of legume research, innovation and trade is small compared to many other crop types and reflects relatively low current commercial values and investments surrounding legume crops.
“This is why we are working with our LegValue and TRUE partners to deliver a series of eight short webinars that will describe the current condition of entire legume value chains within Europe and outline opportunities for stimulating the transition of legumes to deliver a greater role in European agriculture through innovation.
“I am excited to also launch the Legume Innovation Network, a legacy of the two founding projects. It is my hope that it will link people with similar interests, provide opportunities for challenges to be resolved more-easily, with potential partners finding resources for mutual benefit, and directly help realise more sustainable agri-food systems.”
The webinars are:
14 April 10am CEST
Digging in to legumes and the potential of the Legume Innovation Network
This webinar will serve as an introduction to the webinar series illustrating how crop management, variety development and the wider value-chain elements and global economics impact on the delivery of ecosystem services, including the success of growers.
Speakers will outline how the value chain functions, from processing through to marketing, while end-user concerns will be highlighted from the perspective of feed and food, health, and the environmental functions.
20 April 10am CEST
Optimising legume production
This webinar explores the diversity of legume production, including on-farm innovations, pure crops and mixtures, current and future yields for legumes across Europe, valorizing legume benefits within the cropping system, and a decision-support system for legume insertion in cropping systems.
22 April 10am CEST
Legume-based value chains, farm gate and beyond the market
This webinar focuses on three main economic issues that influence the development of legumes in Europe: the trends of legume-based food innovations on markets, how improved market transparency can give better incentives for growing legumes, and the organisational arrangements, such as contracts, that create more farmer incentives to cultivate legumes.
After four short presentations from different stakeholder perspectives, the attendees will discuss those conditions of innovation, price transparency and stakeholders coordination through value chains to sustain the development of pulses.
27 April 10am CEST
The diversity of end uses for legumes
Increased awareness of the need to transition to sustainable food systems is revitalising legume consumption in Europe, leading to a compilation of innovations and initiatives that aim to put legumes as a foundation for this transition. This webinar summarises initiatives that aim to enable the comeback of legumes and their placement in a diversity of end uses, allowing them to become more prominent in human diets and animal feeds.
29 April 10am CEST
Pushing the boundaries in legume breeding
This webinar aims to demonstrate the success of legume breeding, highlight the level of investment, the gaps, and opportunities for the market while exploring the barriers to greater success, and indicating where innovation can and is being successful in influencing feed and food value for the benefit of health, nutrition, and the environment.
4th May 10am CEST
How legume science is enabling industry
This webinar aims to explore the success of science in delivering knowledge, how the science is integral to the network standing ready to facilitate innovation in the value chain and how the science community is ready to engage with industry to create a function network for information exchange.
This webinar will introduce joint lessons from the TRUE-LegValue policy-relevant studies and initiate a rethinking of how "policy understanding" can help to transform our food system to be more legume-based. The potential impact and contribution of policy instruments in scenario-based transition pathways towards greater legume production and consumption will be discussed. Participants are expected from the complete legume innovation helix promoting the industry, science, policy, civil society interactions.
11th May 10am CEST
Roundup: Bringing the Legume Innovation Network together
This webinar will introduce joint lessons from the TRUE-LEGVALUE policy-relevant studies and initiate a rethinking of how "policy understanding" can help to transform our food system to be more legume-based. The potential impact and contribution of policy instruments in scenario-based transition pathways towards greater legume production and consumption will be discussed. Participants are expected from the complete legume innovation helix promoting the industry, science, policy, civil society interactions.
To register your interest in any of the webinars, visit www.pgro.org
For more information about the LegValue project, visit www.legvalue.eu
For more information on the Legume Innovation Network, visit www.true-project.eu/legume-innovation-network